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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Well yesterday we just signed the papers. Sticking with the Armadas as we truely have grown to love them. Was shooting for a 2013-2015 because of the slight interior refresh, and my son wanted the screens in the headrests but couldn’t find any out there in our price range. We ended up with a 2012 Platinum black on black just like our 2010 Platinum other one. 133,000 miles, in really good shape. Hoping it gets delivered next week so now the wait is on. My kid is just pumped for the rear heated seats. I told him he is spoiled. I when when I grew up it was four of us in a regular cab and whoever was on the hump had the shifter between his legs 🤣
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
The man speaks TRUTH!!!! 🤣

Status Update
Finally was able to get the Armada home from the body shop it was at. I dived right in. Already fixed the small “bent” frame section. Working on getting everything else in order. It looks like I need to remove and replace the passenger front apron. Of course it’s a discontinued part. So I am looking for one in a junk yard. Definitely out of my wheel house on the spot weld removal and welding but I am excited about the challenge. Other then that just have to get all the stuff back together on the front in and we will be back in Business. Have looked for a bunch of parts and everything already. I am shooting for a budget of $2,500 to get her all fixed up. Thankfully there are 3 Armadas at my local pull a part shop. Did get her fired up yesterday and everything seems to be okay there. Fired right up and went into gear without any issue. Hopefully get to go digging this week.
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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Had a 50 degree day on Monday so I made good use of it. Went to my local pull a part and was able to get all the mechanical parts to get her back together. Found a rust free Armada that had everything I needed. Was able to get the radiator, core support, a/c condenser, a/c lines, bumper bracket, fan blade, fan shroud, battery tray, and new inner fender apron. This lit a fire under me and today I was able to get the old inner fender apron out. New to me inner fender prepped for trial fitting and clamped in place. Was able to straight out the bent body bushing mount and replaced the damaged bumper bracket. Was able to get the gas hooked up to the new welder. Hope to get my father in law over this weekend to vacuum down the a/c system so I can replace the lines and a/c condenser. I hope to do some practice welds this weekend also. Still looking for a Galaxy black right fender and bumper. But overall great progress this week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Well the day has finally arrived!!! Got the ole girl back on the road. I FORGOT HOW MUCH I LOVE THIS THING!! Took me about 3 months to get her all fixed up. The Armadas are hard to find close to me. I lucked out and found two within an 1hr and a half of me and was able to get everything except the grille super cheap. Had to purchase the grille new, it was more then all the other parts 😂. Still need paint but mechanically all good to go!! Now I can drive it to the body shops to get painting quotes.
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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Small update….

Dropped the fender and bumper off to the body shop to get painted on Monday. Supposed to be done on Friday this week. Super pumped. Hope to have it all back to get her and finalized this weekend. Still trying to figure out why the parking sensors aren’t working but it’s getting there. Really pumped.
 

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You did a fantastic job on this. It's really impressive and inspiring. Thank you for sharing the story. How much did parts cost you total? How many hours do you think you put into it?

I like that you already have the Bilstein front struts on. Since your corrosion protection will probably not be as good as factory on those body pieces, I recommend spraying them inside and out with Fluid Film. Fluid Film creeps over time so you wouldn't have to cover every bit of surface if you spray it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
You did a fantastic job on this. It's really impressive and inspiring. Thank you for sharing the story. How much did parts cost you total? How many hours do you think you put into it?

I like that you already have the Bilstein front struts on. Since your corrosion protection will probably not be as good as factory on those body pieces, I recommend spraying them inside and out with Fluid Film. Fluid Film creeps over time so you wouldn't have to cover every bit of surface if you spray it.
Thank you. I appreciate that. I don’t have a 100% exact price as I haven’t added up all the receipts yet. But am looking at around $2300 in parts/tools. I did purchase a welder and gas and a few other tools that were needed, that’s included in the price.
$2,300 parts/tools/supplies
$1,600 buy back purchase price
$650 painting fender/bumper price

So total I am right around the $4,550 mark. I am happy and totally stoked to still have the vehicle and now it’s paid off 😂. I was fortunate that most of my parts came from a local pull a part yard and the rest only from an hour and a half away. I did purchase a new radiator and A/C compressor from rock auto and my father in law recharged the system. Unfortunately I couldn’t find a used grill so that was a bit of an investment from Nissan at $560 with the emblem

Hours wise is a little harder. If I had to guess I probably have around 40-50 ish hours in getting it back together. Mostly a couple long days. There isn’t really much to the front ends once the welding was done. Just a big Lego set. Normally I just go out and am determined to get certain things done and don’t come in from the garage until it’s accomplished.(wife is not a fan😀).

Fluid Film is a good idea. I was actually suprised as when I disassembled there was like no rust under the fender liners at all. In great shape for the year.
 

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Thank you. I appreciate that. I don’t have a 100% exact price as I haven’t added up all the receipts yet. But am looking at around $2300 in parts/tools. I did purchase a welder and gas and a few other tools that were needed, that’s included in the price.
$2,300 parts/tools/supplies
$1,600 buy back purchase price
$650 painting fender/bumper price

So total I am right around the $4,550 mark. I am happy and totally stoked to still have the vehicle and now it’s paid off 😂. I was fortunate that most of my parts came from a local pull a part yard and the rest only from an hour and a half away. I did purchase a new radiator and A/C compressor from rock auto and my father in law recharged the system. Unfortunately I couldn’t find a used grill so that was a bit of an investment from Nissan at $560 with the emblem

Hours wise is a little harder. If I had to guess I probably have around 40-50 ish hours in getting it back together. Mostly a couple long days. There isn’t really much to the front ends once the welding was done. Just a big Lego set. Normally I just go out and am determined to get certain things done and don’t come in from the garage until it’s accomplished.(wife is not a fan😀).

Fluid Film is a good idea. I was actually suprised as when I disassembled there was like no rust under the fender liners at all. In great shape for the year.
Wow, the way I see it you bought that car for four and a half thousand dollars plus your time. And of course you can use the tools later, and you learned a lot about the car in the process. That is such a win. And to think a great car like that would have gone to the junk yard to be torn apart. $560 for the grill is so much. I looked at them before, and they are cheaper on Ebay non OEM, but who knows about the quality.

Did you research whether this radiator has the ATF coolant intermix issue? Will you let us know how titling goes?
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Wow, the way I see it you bought that car for four and a half thousand dollars plus your time. And of course you can use the tools later, and you learned a lot about the car in the process. That is such a win. And to think a great car like that would have gone to the junk yard to be torn apart. $560 for the grill is so much. I looked at them before, and they are cheaper on Ebay non OEM, but who knows about the quality.

Did you research whether this radiator has the ATF coolant intermix issue? Will you let us know how titling goes?
I agree. I am 100% happy with how it went down. Obviously I would rather go back before the accident any day of the week but whatever, it is what it is right. Been wanting a MIG welder and plasma cutter for a long time anyways so that’s just a bonus. I agree the grille cost was crazy. However the 04-07 grilles are a dime a dozen, and can find aftermarket ones all over the place, but couldn’t find any aftermarket grilles for the 08-15 style. A couple used ones with broken clips for $350-$400 however in my opinion for that much I may as well go new. Call me crazy.
I agree, the thought of this car being torn apart really made me sick to my stomach. We bought it 3 years ago and it was a peach. The interior didn’t even look like it was sat in. Love this truck!! Honestly my most favorite vehicle I have ever owned. Comfortable, good looking, and plenty fast when it needs to be. And my wife loves and named the car so we really wanted to keep it.
I installed a new Denso radiator. I am not sure about the intermixing issue with the radiator. I honestly thought it was age that made the other ones do that. However if that’s not the case and it’s possible with the brand new one I will just disconnect the cooler and bypass it like it was before. Anybody know if the Denso radiators are an issue?

The title is the best part. I had the loan through a local credit union. Insurance paid off the vehicle and the bank sent me a clean released title. I am not selling the vehicle so I am not going to worry about it for the time being. My insurance company has no problem still insuring it so we are just planing on driving the wheels off of it.

Only things I sitting need to do is get the parking sensors all straightened out and start saving money as the piss poorly designed headers have started leaking.
 

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I agree. I am 100% happy with how it went down. Obviously I would rather go back before the accident any day of the week but whatever, it is what it is right. Been wanting a MIG welder and plasma cutter for a long time anyways so that’s just a bonus. I agree the grille cost was crazy. However the 04-07 grilles are a dime a dozen, and can find aftermarket ones all over the place, but couldn’t find any aftermarket grilles for the 08-15 style. A couple used ones with broken clips for $350-$400 however in my opinion for that much I may as well go new. Call me crazy.
I agree, the thought of this car being torn apart really made me sick to my stomach. We bought it 3 years ago and it was a peach. The interior didn’t even look like it was sat in. Love this truck!! Honestly my most favorite vehicle I have ever owned. Comfortable, good looking, and plenty fast when it needs to be. And my wife loves and named the car so we really wanted to keep it.
I installed a new Denso radiator. I am not sure about the intermixing issue with the radiator. I honestly thought it was age that made the other ones do that. However if that’s not the case and it’s possible with the brand new one I will just disconnect the cooler and bypass it like it was before. Anybody know if the Denso radiators are an issue?

The title is the best part. I had the loan through a local credit union. Insurance paid off the vehicle and the bank sent me a clean released title. I am not selling the vehicle so I am not going to worry about it for the time being. My insurance company has no problem still insuring it so we are just planing on driving the wheels off of it.

Only things I sitting need to do is get the parking sensors all straightened out and start saving money as the piss poorly designed headers have started leaking.
$400 for a used grill with broken clips is comical. How many miles does it have on it? I wonder how much of a factor age plays into intermixing. It's hard to get good information about intermixing for Armadas.

That's fantastic about the title. I could see this being one of those situations where what should be the easy part, the paperwork, is actually a real pain. Good thing it worked out like it should, and nobody is messing with your hard work.

I have read on multiple threads that if the exhaust manifolds are leaking, you should not drive it. An explanation I read is that it starts to run rich, the cat breaks up, and pieces get back into the engine scoring the cylinders. People recommend Cajun B Pipes, but I don't know if that's the best route.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
$400 for a used grill with broken clips is comical. How many miles does it have on it? I wonder how much of a factor age plays into intermixing. It's hard to get good information about intermixing for Armadas.

That's fantastic about the title. I could see this being one of those situations where what should be the easy part, the paperwork, is actually a real pain. Good thing it worked out like it should, and nobody is messing with your hard work.

I have read on multiple threads that if the exhaust manifolds are leaking, you should not drive it. An explanation I read is that it starts to run rich, the cat breaks up, and pieces get back into the engine scoring the cylinders. People recommend Cajun B Pipes, but I don't know if that's the best route.
I know it sounds crazy but true. Car parts are at a premium right now. So at least she has a nice shine chrome grille.

She has 140,000 miles on her right now.

Intersting about the manifolds. I just know I hear them tick a little at start up and it goes away after it warms up. I have looked into the Cajun pipes. Probably just need to pull the trigger

It is very hard to get info on these things. This is a nice forum but kinda dead especially with the older stuff. Maybe it’s dead because they are awesome cars and run forever. Let’s go with that one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Finished product. Still have a few smaller items plaguing me. Have a small coolant leak somewhere that I can find for the life of me. Still trying to figure out the parking sensors. The shop who painted them didn’t do as good of a job as I would have liked, so hard to find good body shops now days. But it’s black.

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Finished product. Still have a few smaller items plaguing me. Have a small coolant leak somewhere that I can find for the life of me. Still trying to figure out the parking sensors. The shop who painted them didn’t do as good of a job as I would have liked, so hard to find good body shops now days. But it’s black.

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It looks great. It's frustrating the paint job isn't as good as it should be, but I imagine nobody will notice it unless they are looking for it, and the grill does look nice with the mirrors. If you decide what to do about the manifolds, it would be cool to hear about that as well. It's a shame Nissan left something that ruins engines for the 10 or so years Armadas were produced.
 

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I know it sounds crazy but true. Car parts are at a premium right now. So at least she has a nice shine chrome grille.

She has 140,000 miles on her right now.

Intersting about the manifolds. I just know I hear them tick a little at start up and it goes away after it warms up. I have looked into the Cajun pipes. Probably just need to pull the trigger

It is very hard to get info on these things. This is a nice forum but kinda dead especially with the older stuff. Maybe it’s dead because they are awesome cars and run forever. Let’s go with that one.
Firstly, GREAT job on the Armada! She looks new again!

As far as the manifolds many have had the issue and went with Cajun. They were good to deal with and I have not heard of any issues with people who have them installed (other than the PITA install process). It actually might have been easier when the front end wasn't on.

Here's a vid which shows the process - Aaron is great, but makes things look easier than they are :)


Just a couple of notes on the Cajun/JBA setup:
  • It will be LOUDER, keep that in mind being your wife's vehicle - I have an aftermarket exhaust with a UQ resonator and it is still loud - perhaps would be less with the OEM catback
  • You will get a strong exhaust smell at start up once installed on the outside of the vehicle
  • You will hear the exhaust "whooshing" through the pipes from the inside (which apparently is a good thing to a lot of people - I don't care for it)

OEM manifolds can last in the 80k range but all crack at some point. Other brands of manifolds can fail sooner and the consensus is that the JBA/Cajun setup is the only long term solution.

The 1st gen Armada was not very popular and now they are not made so a lot less posts here. I would check the titan forums as there were a lot more of those sold (or so it seems based upon posts).
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
Thank you for the kind words. We are very happy on how it turned out and glad to have it back. I know the first gens were not as popular as the 2nd however I absolutely love this thing. I remember when they first came out and always liked the look of them. They are plenty fast enough, great looking and comfortable to ride in. All wins for us.
Thank you for the heads up on the noise with the Cajun headers. My wife will definitely not be a fan, and to be honest I am reaching the age where I don’t want it either 🤣. I might just have to go back with OEM and crazy as that sounds. But I do need to get something done, I definitely don’t want to burn up an engine.
 

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First and foremost, amazing job and dedication in getting that beast back on the road.
Now about the JBA headers and it’s increased exhaust resonance. If you stick with the stock exhaust, then it’ll hardly be noticeable. Only if you opt for an aftermarket exhaust such as JBA, Gibson, Magnaflow, etc. then the exhaust resonance becomes much louder.

Currently on my QX80, I’ve got Uprev, JBA LT headers, Cajun HM catted b-pipes, aFe CAI and tb spacer. Even at WOT, the CAI and the “whooshing” sounds running thru the headers is noticeable. What made my QX80 quieter and almost OE like was after I had a shop modify the aFe catback I had prior to the other mods.
 
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